V-ON THE GO
a travel blog about Indonesia’s culture, food, local people, excursion experiences, school environment, use of English and a lot of other exciting things you will soon find out
UNIVERSITAS ISLAM DARUL ULUM (UNISDA)
Receiving a lot of Gifts from People
Counting the days, we only have today and tomorrow before finally starting to travel back to Philippines. We started our day late since today’s schedule was intended for finalizing our reports and documents signing. Bu Irmayani notified us ahead of time that she will pick us up from our homestay to stay a night in Bojonegoro, a neighbor city, for us to experience a different environment.
Before Bu Irmayani arrived, Bu Titin asked me to drop by SMK NU 1 for they will give me something which I don’t have any idea of. I went there and Bu Emy, my cooperating teacher and Bu Titin was there holding the gift they soon handed to me. It was a picture frame full of my photographs saying: Congratulations Mr. Baby Von Bajenting for completing your teaching practicum! It was an overwhelming thing knowing that it came from the English teachers of SMK NU 1. I said my gratitude and took photos with them and head back to our homestay where Bu Irmayani will meet with us.
We found ourselves in Bu Irmayani’s car and went to her house and meet Nenek, Bu Irmayani’s mother. We talked about the first time we met and how funny that encounter was where she (Nenek) spoke to us in Bahasa Indonesia with which my co-exchange student and I didn’t understand a thing and so Jeremy tried to open a sack of rice and act as if he is going to cook. Nenek couldn’t hold her laughter and always burst into an overjoyed emotion when he remembers what Jeremy did. She already cooked for us and that we don’t need to cook anymore. As soon as Jeremy opened the rice cooker, he was like “Oh, so there’s already cooked rice here.” And we were all very happy with this moment. We said our farewell to Nenek in Bahasa Indonesia, gave our hugs and took photos.
After visiting Nenek, it was time for us to say our goodbyes to Pak Anam, Bu Irmayani’s husband who is a headmaster of SMP NU 1 in Lamongan City for almost 9 years now. We stayed at his office. His office who speaks so much of how successful he was as one of the longest-serving headmaster of the school. Trophies and certificates and photographs of him with the big fishes in Indonesia are well-arrayed in all four corners. He gave us batik fabric as souvenirs of Indonesia.
We were now on our way to Bojonegoro, savoring every second of the time knowing we won’t be staying any longer in Indonesia. It was almost sunset and the sun was brightly shining through the windows of our car while we were listening to Indonesian love songs.
We arrived at the hotel after about an hour and a half and got some rest and freshen up for our dinner. We had it at a restaurant nearby where I ordered Nasi Goreng or Fried Rice. This was also the time when we said our goodbyes and thank you’s to Bu Irmayani, the very motherly dean of UNISDA. She gave us another batik garment and said that we will wear it the next day during our seminar, bags for our parents and loved ones too. We couldn’t be more thankful for Bu Irmayani’s thoughtfulness. We also met her son Mas William who accompanied us throughout the night.
Jeremy and I prepared a bit for our seminar the following day as soon as we got to our hotel and slept the night away with all the happy thoughts and memories of Indonesia.
We ended the talk by asking them how do we get to deal with all these differences to which most of them participated in and answered. Jeremy and I shared our experiences in their country and how well culturally literate the people are. Respect and acceptance and tolerance to the differences made us get along despite and in spite of our personal identities and varied worldviews.
This is where our journey ends. It was the best experience in my college life so far!